Mapping Monday: The Overlooked School Supply

With all of the school-supply shopping over and done with, many students probably didn’t pick up a compass to take with them to school.

Illustration by Pixel Embargo/Shutterstock

And that’s OK, since long-gone are the days when kids trekked to school uphill both ways in blizzards. But do your students know the cardinal directions? Do they have a sense of their route to school, or even the route from the bus to their classrooms? What about the route from the classroom to the bathroom or the cafeteria?

Since your school is very familiar to you, you may not take time out to assess your students’ knowledge of where things are in the classroom or in the school building. By taking time to explore your school with your students, you can add in activities about the compass rose and mapping your classroom. Think about ways that you can get your students thinking about where they are and what’s going on in their surroundings. With so much technology at our fingertips, reflecting on simple lessons that will help guide your students in starting to think about the world is an excellent way to kickstart your school year.

Finish up your lesson by wowing your students with this blog post about how the compass rose saved a National Geographic expedition!

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